|my bathroom sink, ready to go!|
* if your hair is already damaged, I recommend waiting until it has grown out and is healthier. Your hair probably won't fall out but excess bleach can damage your hair so badly that you'll have to chop it off! It happened to me junior year of high school. I had blue hair and tried to go back to a normal color. My hair was the consistency of cotton candy. Dry, brittle, pulled apart with the slightest touch. Yeah, it was bad. I had to chop it off to ear length.
* Bleach will always damage your hair, no matter what.
* If in doubt, get advice from a professional first. They are trained in hair health, color and so on so they will know what's best and they will help you do it the right way with minimal hair drama.
* The majority of my hair colors are accidents. That being said, I'm clearly a novice when it comes to this stuff. If any professionals have any words of wisdom, please do share it in a comment below! :)
Bleach and Developer
I use my trusty, Quick Blue from Sally Beauty Supply. It comes in a single pack or a big tub. I used it when I dyed my hair crazy colors so I figured I'd stick with what I'm comfortable with. Quick Blue is thick, creamy and good for on and off scalp application. Any bleach will do the job, though. I've also used Manic Panic Flash Lightning with good results. I hear good things about Wella Blondor but I haven't used it personally. Quick Blue (and other bleaches) are powders so you 'll need a cream developer to mix with it. Sallys sells them in big bottles for a few bucks and usually cheaper than that when they're on sale.
Your current hair color and level of damage/sensitivity depends on what level of developer to buy. I recommend reading this article before buying developer. My hair was healthy and dark so I thought about using a level 40 but it was going to have to go on my scalp (or close to). Instead, I used a 30 to avoid chemical burn. There is -nothing- in the world worth a chemical burn. I've had it and it hurts like hell. Be good to yourself, take your time and do a second bleach if needed...just don't do it twice in one day.
Bleaching Tips: section your hair off for a thorough application. Have a friend help so you don't have a big dark patch in the back (I've done that! :). Do it in a ventilated room or outside. Apply it to your ends first because the roots lighten much faster than the ends. Avoid rubbing it on your scalp and of course, don't get it in your eye. Don't use hair bleach to do your lashes or brows. For the entire how-to and for more good bleaching advice, check out this article
After bleaching, your hair will probably be bright, horrid yellow so you'll need a pretty dye. Since I wanted platinum blonde, I went with Ion Color Brilliance HL-V Hi Lift Cool Blonde. You can use the same developer that you used for bleach or go with a higher level developer, depending on your desired results. My hair had some red tints in it before and when I dyed it, it was still awful and yellow. Do you remeber my cute crochet turban? That wasn't a fashion choice, that was an attempt to cover my neon yellow head! hehe!! I waited a week and dyed again with the same color.
This time, I added my new secret weapon, Ardell Red Gold Corrector Plus.
It's only 99 cents and it really takes that yellow brassiness out of your hair. You simply mix it with your hair color and apply as usual. This stuff is very purple. Your hair color will be purple and you will probably wonder if you'll have purple hair when it's all over with but it's okay, you won't!
|wow, that's purple!|
Keeping the Blonde and Restoring Damaged Hair
To protect my hair from turning yellow and brassy, I use One n' Only Shiny Silver Ultra Shampoo. It's a violet tinted shampoo, which counteracts the yellow, keeping it cool blonde. You can also buy voilet tinted conditioner, mousse and other hair products but so far, the shampoo does the trick for me.
Bleaching is always damaging to your hair but you can do a deep condition and try protein treatments to help it along. I avoid heat, tight hair styles and other damaging things after bleaching. For at-home root touch-ups, only re-bleach and dye the new growth. Constant bleaching/dyeing of the whole head can result in uneven color and severe damage. I keep a big bottle of developer on hand and only purchase new gloves, bleach packs and dye when I need to color again so it's about $10 every 5-6 weeks.
Well, that's it! If anyone has any further questions, advice or anything, please leave a comment :)